Van Renovations for Staycations this Summer


While travel seems like more of a possibility this summer than it did last year, many people are nervous to book expensive holidays abroad in fear that we may not be completely in the clear just yet. With this in mind, the humble staycation seems like an attractive option. 

Staycations can take many forms, from camping holidays to fancy hotel stays. They are often cheaper, and also more eco-friendly as they reduce the amount of travel time it takes to get to your chosen holiday destination.

One way people seem to be ‘staycationing’ this summer is through van renovations. Van renovating is a new form of glamping that we are seeing pop up over social media. 

Doing Up Your Van 

Van renovations seem to be another example of a ‘lockdown hobby’ that people all over Instagram have been undertaking.

Stripping one out and making it liveable is obviously a mammoth task with millions of things to consider, but to get you started we have pulled together a list of things to think about when renovating a van:

  1. Keep it simple; think about your main reasons for using the van. It’s probably going to be mostly for sleeping and driving, so build it accordingly. Having a little awning to come off the side so you can sit outside is a great idea, don’t waste space inside thinking you will socialise there. 
  2. One thing to remember is that if you are deep in a dark campsite, there’ll be little to no light, so make sure you are prepared for this. There are hundreds of battery operated lights available, from lanterns to Christmas lights which will make your van conversion feel like home. For the more eco-minded of you, solar lights are a great option.
  3. WATER! A rule of thumb should always be; bring more water than you think you’ll need. An obvious benefit to the campervan is that you will have plenty of storage to carry it. Consider putting it under the bed or even building an aqua-tainer to store it.

While this can be quite an expensive way to do a holiday initially, the advantage is that it’s an investment so it’s there whenever you fancy a little weekend trip!

Van Renovation Inspiration 

For more information and inspiration we have listed a few of the most beautiful examples of van renovations we have seen this year.

First up, we have @naturally.sassy. Ballerina turned home renovator, her latest renovation has been her ‘second home’ camper van which she travels all over the country with. Check out her Instagram for all things renovation.

Another one to watch for inspiration is @the.activ. This US-based couple boasts an impressive van conversion which they take to some pretty incredible parts of America. Have a look if you want serious travel envy. 

@vincentvanlife are the King and Queen of all types of second homes. Not only have they converted a van but their full-time home is a narrowboat. Take a peek at their Instagram to see what they get up to on the canals with their adorable pup, Wilf.

Globetrotter @mitch.cox travels all over the world in his aesthetically pleasing van with his beautiful girlfriend Cleo. The pair have decked this van out so incredibly, it even has a wall mounted tv and running water!

Finally, we have little van-family @pinepins. This van loving couple travels around Germany with their adorable little boy Fete. They’ve even named their van Rudi! 

How Shiply Can Help
From getting your van delivered to shipping your upgraded parts, Shiply is here to help. Post a listing here and have quotes flooding in within minutes for you to choose from.

A Guide To Upcycling

Upcycling has increased in popularity over the last 18 months as many people took on new hobbies over the pandemic. The term refers to improving, restoring or fixing older items that otherwise may have been disposed of. The finished product is obviously an improvement to the item but it is also a way for you to add your own twist and make it unique. 

Reupholstering chairs with new fabric, stripping and repainting wardrobes and even using old pallets to create furniture, are all examples of ways you can upcycle.

You can find a whole heap of inspiration on Instagram. From upcycling clothes to old furniture, some of our favourite accounts include;

  1. A Pair & A Spare
  2. A Beautiful Mess
  3. Upcycle That @upcyclethat
  4. The House of Upcycling @thehouseofup
  5. A Beautiful Mess @abeautifulmess

Where to find these items to upcycle

Once you’re feeling inspired, it’s time to find items to upcycle. The first place to look would obviously be anything you own or your family owns already. If this is a dead-end, eBay, Gumtree, Schpock and charity shops are great places to find second-hand furniture and other things that need upcycling.

Advantages to Upcycling

The first advantage is economic. Not only is upcycling a great ‘hands on’ hobby but it is also a great way to recycle things that already exist instead of having to buy more. This not only is better for the environment, but also on your wallet! 

Creating gifts from upcycled items is much more personal and many people are now including upcycled items in their weddings. 

Making changes to your old items, big or small is a really easy way to breathe new life into old items. One man’s trash is another’s treasure has never been a truer statement.

Selling these items on

As well as being a cheap, planet-saving fun activity, selling these upcycled items is a way to make your money back. Listing them back onto eBay, Gumtree or even social media can drum up interest. And using Shiply to transport these items over to your new customers, is a further way to keep these costs down!